The Skeptical Samurai Guide to the Movies: Grown Ups

Time for another instalment of…

The Skeptical Samurai’s Guide to the Movies!

This week’s movie: Grown Ups

I watched this movie the other night with the wife and the bulldogs, and while far from a cimenatic masterpiece, I found it rather funny.  It was exactly what you would expect from an Adam Sandler movie, some good yuks with lots of head + groin trauma. 

I am not going to dissect the entire movie (as this is not the type of movie that really lends itself to Fact vs. Fiction treatment!), but instead i am going to focus on one particular scene.  Specifically, the scene where each of the “Grown Ups” pee in the pool at the water park and are horrified to learn that the pool contains the infamous “urine-indicator chemical” that turns the water a dark blue (the scene is actually briefly shown in the trailer attached above).

I remember hearing about the “urine-indicator chemical” myth as a kid.  I never heard this myth propagated by my parents, but i did hear i time to time from life guards and other forms of aquatic supervisors.  Despite these warnings, i never saw the mysterious “urine-indicator chemical” in action.  I do recall a few friends who claimed to have a distant cousin or a friend of a friend that experienced the urine-indicator chemical, but no 1st hand accounts. 

So after watching “Grown Ups”, i thought to myself: “I wonder if the urine indicator chemical actually exists?”

It turns out that the urine indicator chemical does not exist.  It is simply an urban myth. 

There are numerous websites/articles out there that have dispelled this myth.  In fact some pool/aquatic companies have gone so far as to address this question on the FAQ section of their website! 

Although the urine indicator chemical does not exist, the creation of such a chemical is entirely possible.  The main difficulty in creating such a chemical would be ensuring that the chemical was specific enough to eliminate false positives.  So while there would be some complexities, the creation of a urine indicator chemical is within the realm of possibility/reality. 

So where is the mythical urine indicator chemical?  I mean, someone must be developing it right?  I mean, this is a huge issue that could potentially affect the fate of mankind!

Well, not quite. 

My research indicates that no researchers or companies are currently developing the urine indicator chemical.  For that matter, as best as i can tell, no researcher or company has ever even attempted to create such a chemical!  Which raises the obvious question, why hasn’t such a chemical been created?  Well, because kids (and some grown-ups) are going to urinate in pools!  Sadly, it is just the cost of doing business when it comes to public pools.  If such a chemical existed, all public pools would most likely be bright blue (similar to the scene in the “Grown Ups” trailer)!

However, it is worth noting that many pool supply companies (and the people who buy their products) continue to prey among people’s fear of this mythical indicator chemical.  But can you really blame them?  Would you want people urinating in your pool!?  Signs such as the one below can be purchased from most pool supply companies. 

So what have we learned from this?

1)      Urban myths are typically (but not always) considered myths for a reason

2)      Hollywood lies to you

3)      You can urinate in pools without fear of being exposed by the mythical urine indicator chemical.  But please, for the sake of those around you, don’t be that guy/gal!      

This has been the Skeptical Samurai

Working to serve…

Through the process of inquiry…

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4 Responses to “The Skeptical Samurai Guide to the Movies: Grown Ups”

  1. I love the total randomness of your blogs. I NEVER know what I’m going to get, other than the fact that it will be somehow related to skepticism, which I think is an extremely important (possibly the MOST important???) thought process when it comes to our survival. Good work.

    • theskepticalsamurai Says:

      Thanks man! That means a lot coming from you

      I do my best to change things up and keep things fresh. I am trying my best to show people that skepticism and critical thinking can be applied to ALL aspects of life.

      Again, glad you are diggin the blog.
      You keep reading them, and i will keep writing them!

  2. If that sexual misconduct charge in Sweden takes Julian Assange indefinitely out of commission, you have here proven that the Skeptical Samurai will step up to fill his shoes, publishing the truth about the forces dictating our liberty. Hazah and pee away!

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